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Tripods - The Complete Series 1 & 2 [DVD]
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First broadcast in 1984, post-apocalyptic adventure The Tripods remains one of the UK’s best-loved science-fiction series. This DVD set contains both series of The Tripods as well as fascinating extra material.The year is 2089. An alien race stalks the land in towering machines known as Tripods. They have taken over the earth and enslaved mankind with a mind-controlling device, ceremoniously implanted at adolescence. Will Parker, desperate to escape this ritual, leaves the village with his cousin, Henry and attempts to link up with the human resistance movement. On the run, their life is fraught with danger as they try to elude the giant machines and the Black Guard, the alien’s human servants. On a thrilling journey, their adventures take them to the ruins of Paris and on through Europe until, eventually, Will infiltrates Tripod City itself – a perilous world of Masters and Cognoscs…
Science fiction fans viewing British television in the 1980s had much to contend with. Limited budgets and unconvincing special effects often required a leap of faith of such size as to put people off. But, in the midst of this, emerged The Tripods, a fondly-remembered sci-fi hit of the time, of which both series are present on this DVD set.
Adapted from the books by John Christopher, The Tripods is set late in the 21st century, with humanity living in peaceful servitude, albeit under the eye of huge alien machines. These machines--The Tripods--fit the young with special headgear that will ensure future humans are similarly subservient to the alien invaders, and its when two teenagers, Will and Henry, look to evade such treatment that the adventure begins.
Hearing stories of other uncapped humans in the south, they set off on a journey to find them, while being pursued by The Tripods, who naturally arent best happy.
There are many pleasant surprises to The Tripods, even rewatching it today, and the programme has stood up really very well to the rigours of time. The limited budget means that the deployment of the Tripods themselves is kept for carefully chosen moments, and theyre convincing, at time intimidating invaders. But its the storytelling thats key here, and its that which should ensure this DVD release earns The Tripods a new collection of fans. Well worth picking up. --Jon Foster
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Top Customer Reviews
I was somewhat apprehensive that this might turn out to be one of those things that was best left as a childhood memory, but I was pleasantly surprised.
Yes, the special effects are now badly dated and the acting is a bit wooden, especially in series one. That said I've just finished a weekend marathon of series 1&2 and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I particularly enjoyed series 2 which had much less filler, was more menacing and had better acting. I wasn't intending to watch them all in one go, but it drew me in.
As a Welshman I was amused by the 'Alps', or Snowdonia as we Welsh like to call them!
I doubt that a child of today would enjoy the TV series, as modern special effects and production standards are much higher, but I'm sure they would enjoy the books just as much as I did. That's if you can get hold of them.
I have now watched both series on this DVD-set and I must say what a great story.
Earth is occupied by the Tripods with humanity existing in middle-age-type farming communities. Nobody rebels against this because humanity is mind-controlled via a cap which becomes compulsory from the age of 16. Will and his cousin Henry are not so keen on being capped and run away to the White Mountains to join the free people. On the way, they are joined by a French chap called Beanpole. The first series deals with the three friends making their way to the White Mountains to join the uncapped (and free) people.
In Series Two, Will via a process which is not dissimilar from the Olympic Games is picked to enter the Tripod City. Serving his Tripod master in his free time he discovers a lot about the Tripod's plans for Earth. Will manages to kill his Master - although in a court of law he could probably claim self-defence - and with the help of another infiltrator manages to leave the Tripod City. He then meets Beanpole and they make their way back to the White Mountains, where they find that the Tripods have destroyed the free men's camp. This is where Series Two ends.
As I said earlier, it is a marvellous story and I really enjoyed watching it. What I find annoying is that Series Two ends in the middle of nowhere. In the last sequence, Will says: "has it all been for nothing" and I wondered if that is indeed the case. With the `beancounters' in the BBC refusing to produce the third series the whole project has been decapitated.Read more ›
If you are in your late 30's and remember this first time round then going back
to it is heart warming indeed. Excellently cast and shot it shows the BBC at their
best with great development of characters and storylines. But the reality is that
not for the first time the BBC lets itself down again by not taking the story
to its logical conclusion by axing the 3rd Series (Book 3 in the Trilogy)before
it could be filmed. The BBC has done this recently too with the new version
of 'Survivors' which was yet another high quality drama series that was sacrificed
on the altar of reality television. It just shows you that this has been going on for years.
So allthough SciFi fans will enjoy The Tripods the key decision you have to make when buying
this DVD is if you are willing to buy a series that was only 2/3rds finished. I would
say the answer is YES. Do what I did and go out and buy the 3rd book in the trilogy
to take the story to its natural and logical conclusion.
The BBC video release team have done there usual excellent job here. Considering the age and the atempts to reduce cost of it's production at the time (use of cheap videotape and such like)the video transfer is very good and definatley stands the test of time. Watching it Up-scaled did make some of badly done effects look pretty bad, but other than that it is a wonderful tranfer of a 26 year old television series.
As one would expect, the audio has been treated just as well as the video and we're left with an excellent stereo mix. No complaints from me as the 80's synth soundtrack booms out of my surround system.
As well as the usual retrospectives that the beeb have gotten used to putting on their better DVD releases, we also get treated to a special audio presentation which represents what the soundtrack for the cancelled third series "pool of fire" would have sounded like. it just seems a shame that nothing of the series was made to go with it.
This series ended the year I was born so I missed out of the first run. This DVD series is an excellent presentation of a sci-fi series that deserves alot more attention than it gets.
A must buy for classic sci-fi fans!!!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
There should have been a series 3, the BBC stopped making it before the end.. so you will have to read the book.Published 1 month ago by Mr P.A.D. Glover
The Tripods was all I expected. I saw a few episodes as a teenager in the seventies and thanks to a region free blue ray player, I can enjoy all my lost BBC treasures! Read morePublished 5 months ago by Joeyr2
Absolutely Fantastic dvd Boxset , Brand New & Sealed , Super Fast Delivery 5***** Thank You Amazon A+++++Published 6 months ago by Justin Williams
First season slow paced but worth it for the second season in the golden city.Published 7 months ago by IanJ